Why Obama won re-election

Breakdown of electoral votes where Obama and Romney won by state

It has been four days after the incumbent President Barack Obama won an another four-year term as the President of the United States over Mitt Romney. I was not surprised that Obama won with 332 electoral votes over Mitt Romney, who got 206 electoral votes. However, in terms of popular votes, it was a close race between them as Obama barely got half of 61,907,639 or 50.5% while Mitt Romney got the another half of  58,648,640 or 49.5%. but the closeness of the popular votes does not matter in the discussion as the selection for the next president will be decided by the Electoral College composed of 538 electors chosen by their respective states.

Many said that Obama won despite a lousy economic recovery was due to Mitt Romney’s pandering the sentiments of the old white electorates like hardline stand on immigration, same-sex marriages, marijuana legalization, dealing with China and the Middle East, and corporate welfare which for me was true as the electoral base of Mitt Romney had been declining even before the election and still had to win support from the largest Republican voter, the white Evangelical electorates from the Southeastern part of the United States. It would had been impossible to get the Republican presidential nomination for Mitt Romney if he did not pander the voting sentiments of the white Evangelical electorates as Mitt Romney during the Republican presidential nominee was more moderate and winnable than his rivals like Rick Santorum, Newt Gingrich, Rick Perry, Herman Cain, Michelle Bachmann, and Ron Paul.

Mitt Romney could have won the election had he moderate his immigration stance like supporting the DREAM Act in order to gain a chunk of Hispanic electorates but instead, he lost miserably the votes of the Hispanics to Barack Obama. Romney’s flip flopping stance didn’t help him either.

The increasing Millennial (born between the 1980s up to present), Hispanic, Asian, and of course monolithic African American electorates was the source of electoral victory for Barack Obama last Tuesday. Barack Obama was able to consolidate the sentiments of emerging electorate like reforming the immigration laws through the DREAM Act, legalizing the same-sex marriages by state legislation, legalizing the usage of marijuana by state legislation, increased social spending, and withdrawal of US armed troops from Iraq and Afghanistan.

In order for the Republican Party to be competitive with the changing demographics of the United States, they should moderate the social stance like the issue of legalizing same-sex marriages, legalizing marijuana, legalizing abortion, increased spending on stem-cell research, and moderate immigration policy especially to the Hispanics. The Republican Party should realize their foreign policy platform of American Exceptionalism cannot work in an increasing multipolar and more globally integrated world like their hardline stand on Iran, China, Cuba, or many other countries that they perceived as the America’s enemy. The Republican Party should also return to their economic conservatism roots like reduced government spending on military, subsidizing failing corporations, and subsidizing big farm interests.

 

 

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2012 United States presidential elections

Mitt Romney and Barack Obama

Today is the presidential election in the United States where the American electorates will decide on who should be the President of the United States beyond 20 January 2013. The main candidates are the incumbent President Barack Obama and his challenger, former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney.

The United States presidential election is one of the most watched elections in the world as the decisions of the American electorate does not only affects the lives of the American people but also the lives of the world as the United States maintains its economic, military, political, and cultural influences around the globe. Choosing who is the next president of the United States should be responsible and capable in dealing not just the domestic affairs of the United States but also its interests around the globe.

The main issue this election is about the economic state of the United States where for the past four years, still fighting the effects of the 2007-09 Subprime financial crisis as the real estate boom pooped due to the loans that the American debtors cannot pay on time. The burst of the real estate boom in the United States lowered the confidence to the American financial system on which by 2008, it became a full-blown recession as the Lehman Brothers, one of the leading American investment banks then, declared bankruptcy. The severe recession in 2008 brought Barack Obama to the presidency in the same year and had to deal not just the effects of the Subprime financial crisis but also the foreign policy blunders of the George W. Bush administration in Iraq and Afghanistan that drained the America’s finances as Bush cut the tax rates among the upper-class people while increased the spending on military.

Obama’s presidency for me does not meet my expectations, four years ago as he merely continued the heavy spending spree by the government not just in military but also in social entitlement programs like the food stamps and his watered down medical care system (Obamacare) which will be expected to drain the America’s finance beyond 2014. Obama’s spending spree has reduced the economic competitiveness of the United States compared with the rest of the world where the Standard and Poor had to reduce the credit rating of the United States by a notch as Obama and the Republican-controlled Congress cannot agreed on paying the debt obligations of the United States until the last moment in August 2011 just to avoid default that would have been a disaster to the world’s economy.

Obama has committed foreign policy blunders like trying to contain the China’s economic rise, costing the live of an American ambassador in Libya, angering the Israelite for somewhat, angering the Iranians further, and many others.

However, Mitt Romney for me will continue the Obama’s blunders in domestic and foreign affairs as he postulated his platforms pretty similar or maybe worse than Obama. In conclusion, I have no reason to support both of them as the Americans and the world will be the losers in the end unless there will be a sensible and pragmatic president of the United States to come in the future.

11th anniversary of the 9/11 attacks and its long-term effects

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World Trade Center fuming after it was dropped by two hijacked commercial airplanes by the members of the Al-Qaeda.

Today is the 11th anniversary of the 9/11 attacks at the World Trade Center twin towers in Manhattan, New York and at a field in Shanksville, Pennsylvania. These three successive suicide attacks with the first two at the World Trade Center and the last one at the Shanksville, Pennsylvania caused millions of dollars of damages and thousands of casualties.

The 9/11 attacks was also the start of the 21st century as the events before the attacks was the continuation of the unrivaled peace and prosperity of the United States for almost ten years after the collapse of the Soviet Union. The economic, political effects and the American’s reaction of the 9/11 was the triggering reason for the War of Terrorism initiated by the United States and its allies like the United Kingdom and Australia to curb the spread of Islamic extremism through Al-Qaeda as a result of faulty American foreign policies regarding in Middle East, way back the Arab-Jewish partition of Palestine.

A month after the 9/11 attacks, the United States and its allies including the Philippines attacked Afghanistan in order to hunt Bin Ladin, the principal perpetrator of the 9/11 attacks and to dismantle the Al-Qaeda movement, Islamic extremist movement founded by Osama Bin Ladin.

At first, the Coalition Forces led by the United States succeeded in overthrowing the Taliban-led government in Afghanistan, the principal allies of the Al-Qaeda movement fighting the Coalition Forces. However, it did not bring an everlasting peace in Afghanistan until this moment as the newly-installed democratic government with the help of the Coalition Forces have to fight the militias sympathizing the causes of Taliban and the Al-Qaeda.

The goal of the Coalition Forces to capture Osama Bin Ladin had been failed as Osama managed to escape to Pakistan and had to hide in a safety compound near the capital of Pakistan, Islamabad. He was killed later by the US soldiers on 2 May 2011.

The second major war by the United States and its allies like United Kingdom, Australia, Poland, and Spain attacked Iraq led by Saddam Hussein with the objective of destroying the alleged weapons of mass destruction possession by Iraq which was later found out that there was not.

Second objective was to overthrow Saddam Hussein from power as he was allegedly collaborated with the Al-Qaeda to attack the US during the 9/11. The US and its allies fulfilled their mission as Saddam was overthrown from power, months after the start of the Iraq War due to decreasing support from Iraqis and continuous attacks by the US and UK forces. Saddam hid after his deposition in a compound in Iraq and captured in December 2003. He was tried before the court conducted by the Iraqi Interim Government and was executed by hanging for his crimes committed against the humanity.

The same as in Afghanistan, the deposition of Saddam Hussein from power did not bring everlasting peace in Iraq as ethno, political, and religious factions from the sectors of Iraqi society fought for control of the whole Iraq vacated after Saddam’s deposition.

The reactions after the 9/11 attacks by Al-Qaeda created more deaths than what happened during the 9/11 itself as the US and its allied countries had to spend money, waste soldier and civilian lives just to eradicate the Islamic extremism, indirectly created by the faults of the US, half centuries back.

The 9/11 attacks ended the US monopoly in cultural, economic, and political supremacy as the competing countries like China, and Russia used the 9/11 events to consolidate their respective strengths while the US was suffering from cultural, economic, and political downturns as a result of the 9/11 attacks.

The 9/11 attacks proved that the United States was not an indivisible country as they thought. It was proved also that the United States should not be forceful on spreading their cultural, economic, and political aspects in other countries especially Iraq and Afghanistan.

The United States should learn on how to work with harmonious diplomacy in these globalizing world where almost all cultures not just Americans spreads widely that conflicts are inevitable and be solved only with cooperation and diplomacy. In order for the United States to maintain its superpower status in a long-run, they should realize that they have to learn the sensibilities of other cultures while spreading their cultural, economic, and political aspects to them. 

We should remember that a more prosperous, peaceful, and open-minded United States leads into a more more prosperous, peaceful, and open-minded world.